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Lower pump prices expected to bring more US holiday drivers

November 25/2011

(ICIS) -- The recent drop in retail gasoline prices could buoy an increase in the number of US Thanksgiving Day holiday motorists, a market analyst said on Wednesday, but others predicted the shaky economy could dampen travel.

Sentiment is that prices are lower than earlier this year, [despite] that they are much higher than last year, and thats pushing people to view things positively, thus making little or few changes to their plans, said analyst Patrick DeHaan with

On 5 September, the US retail average for unleaded gasoline was $3.643/gal (?.71/litre), according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). On 21 November, the average price was $3.312/gal, a drop of 9.1%. DeHaan said prices for the holiday would still be at least be 25-50 cents higher than any previous Thanksgiving, but the prices have slowly come down in the past couple of months.

In addition, recent headlines have brightened the US economic outlook, said analyst Stephen Schork, author of the Schork Report.

The past two weeks has shown US unemployment claims under 400,000, and the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for October was higher, indicating increased buying of retail items, including gasoline.
Schork also pointed out, however, that the MasterCard SpendingPulse has reported lower gasoline demand. For the week ended 4 November, gasoline demand was 8.665m bbl/day, according to the report, the lowest weekly demand since 9 September.

Perspectives of development of the polymers markets, pricing issues and other important aspects will be discussed at The Polymers Summit-2011, which will be held in Moscow on November 30, 2011 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. The Summit is organized by MRC with the support of ICIS. The main idea of the Summit is to find a "the golden mean" between producers and converters. When producers receive exactly such margin of production, which helps them to invest in production expansion in order to substitute polymers imports, and the converters receive such price of feedstock that helps them to compete imported finished products. The Summit site gives an access to the live video of the Summit, speakers" presentations, as well as opportunities to ask questions or make appointments to any Summit partcipant.

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